Donald Farr
Former Editor, Mustang Monthly
September 1, 2005

Boss Shinoda HistoryWhen General Motors' Executive Vice President Semon "Bunkie" Knudsen was hired by Henry Ford II to run Ford Motor Company in February 1968, he brought with him designer Larry Shinoda, who was best known for creating the original Corvette Sting Ray concept at GM. Put in charge of Ford's Special Project Design Office, Shinoda quickly came up with an image package for the street version of the '69 Trans-Am Mustang fastback, calling it "Boss" in homage to his nickname for Knudsen while also realizing that the word was popular with young people. The resulting '69-'70 Boss 302s, with their Shinoda-designed stripes, spoilers, and rear-window louvers, established a new standard for musclecar visuals.

Three years later, Henry Ford II fired Knudsen, and Shinoda was out the door with him. Shinoda followed Knudsen to White Motor Corporation before starting his own company, Shinoda Design Associates.

In 1994 when then-Mustang Chief Engineer John Coletti put together a Boss 429-powered '94 Mustang concept car as a show piece, he added to the Boss-retro theme by asking Shinoda to design a stripe package. At one point, there was even talk of offering a production Boss as a special model from Ford SVO; but when the idea was eventually scrapped, Shinoda asked for and received permission to use the Boss name for a Boss Shinoda appearance package, including the stripe package, a Shinoda-designed rear spoiler, and "Shinoda by Budnik" wheels.

Jim Klok entered the picture when he was laid off from his job at Roush after his 5.0 intake manifold design was shelved in favor of a Roush ram-air induction package. Someone at Roush suggested that Klok offer the intake to Shinoda, who was looking for ways to add performance to the Boss Shinoda package. Eventually, Shinoda would recruit Klok as his performance manager.

When Shinoda passed away in November 1997, his daughter, Karen, and her husband, Brian Flahive, created Team Shinoda to continue the legacy of Larry Shinoda and his Boss Mustangs. Karen and Brian, who are both designers, are responsible for the current Boss Shinoda graphics and approve all aspects of the Boss Shinoda program. To eliminate confusion about Team Mustang being a "club," the name was recently changed to Shinoda Performance Vehicles.

Boss Shinoda Packages & OptionsS = Standard EquipmentO = Optional Equipment

  {{{Legacy}}} Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Stroker
Boss Shinoda graphics S S S S S
Boss Shinoda chin spoiler S S S S S
Boss Shinoda rear spoiler S S S S S
Boss Shinoda retro graphics N/A N/A N/A N/A S
Boss Shinoda floor mats S S S S S
Aluminum pedals S S S S S
T-handle or white shift knob S S S S S